Journal Article Methane exchange in a poorly-drained black spruce forest over permafrost observed using the eddy covariance technique

Iwata, Hiroki  ,  Harazono, Yoshinobu  ,  Ueyama, Masahito  ,  Sakabe, Ayaka  ,  Nagano, Hirohiko  ,  Kosugi, Yoshiko  ,  Takahashi, Kenshi  ,  Kim, Yongwon

214pp.157 - 168 , 2015-12-15 , ELSEVIER SCIENCE BV
Ecosystem-scale methane (CH4) exchange was observed in a poorly-drained black spruce forest over permafrost in interior Alaska during the snow-free seasons of 2011–2013, using the eddy covariance technique. The magnitude of average CH4 exchange differed depending on wind direction, reflecting spatial variation in soil moisture condition around the observation tower, due to elevation change within the small catchment. In the drier upper position, the seasonal variation in CH4 emission was explained by the variation in soil water content only. In the wetter bottom, however, in addition to soil temperature and soil water content, seasonal thaw depth of frozen soil was also an important variable explaining the seasonal variation in CH4 exchange for this ecosystem. Total snow-free season (day of year 134–280) CH4 exchanges were 12.0 ± 1.0, 19.6 ± 3.0, and 36.6 ± 4.4 mmol m−2 season−1 for the drier upper position, moderately wet area, and wetter bottom of the catchment, respectively. Observed total season CH4 emission was nearly one order smaller than those reported in other northern wetlands, due probably to the relatively low ground water level and low soil temperature. The interannual variation of total snow-free season CH4 emission in the wetter bottom of the catchment was influenced by the amount of rainfall and thaw depth. On the other hand, in the drier upper position the amount of rainfall did not strongly affect the total season CH4 emission. Different responses of CH4 exchange to environmental conditions, depending on the position of a small catchment, should be considered when estimating the spatial variation in CH4 exchange accurately in ecosystems over permafrost.

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